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The Top Skills Healthcare Employers Want from Medical Assistants

What skills do employers look for when hiring medical assistants? What qualities help medical assistants excel in their jobs? Although each employer prioritizes specific skills and qualities, there are a few general skills and attributes that are at the top of the list.

People Skills

Throughout any given shift, medical assistants interact with people. They work with patients, patients’ family members, and office personnel, as well as physicians, nurses, and other medical personnel. They may also interact with various outside entities, including pharmacies, health insurance companies, and other medical offices. Because they represent the healthcare facility, it’s important for medical assistants to be positive, engaged, confident in their duties, and comfortable working with people of all ages, backgrounds, and walks of life.

Although medical assistants work with all of these groups, their interactions with patients are of primary importance. They may encounter patients who are nervous, upset, angry, or in pain. With good communication skills and strong people skills, they will be able to work with patients to help keep them calm and comfortable while the patients are waiting to see the nurse or doctor.

Administrative Duties

Although a medical assistant’s specific duties may vary, they may include a variety of administrative and clinical tasks. A medical assistant’s administrative duties may include establishing and managing office procedures and implementing medical documentation systems using appropriate medical terminology. This may include but not be limited to scheduling appointments, keeping medical records, billing, and insurance coding.

Some of these tasks may be specific to medical offices, while others, such as answering telephones, greeting patients, handling correspondence, scheduling appointments, and handling billing and insurance reimbursement, may be similar to tasks performed in non-medical offices. In addition, the tasks may vary depending on the size of the practice. In small practices, medical assistants may perform both administrative and clinical duties; in a larger practice, medical assistants may specialize in a particular area.

Clinical Duties

With clinical duties, as with administrative duties, the specifics will be determined by the particular facility. However, it’s important to note that medical assistants work mainly in facilities that handle outpatient procedures (or ambulatory care) as opposed to hospitals with larger, more specialized, staff.

Medical assistants may have a variety of clinical duties, including but not limited to recording patient history, measuring vital signs, helping physicians with patient examinations, administering injections or medications as directed by physicians and permitted by state law, and preparing blood samples for laboratory testing.

Are You a Medical Assistant?

At 365 Healthcare Staffing Services, we specialize in the recruitment and placement of healthcare professionals in per diem, travel, and permanent assignments in healthcare facilities across the country. Are you a medical assistant seeking a new assignment? We can help you find it; give us a call at 310.436.3650 today!